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Messages - Maintain FL 350

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71
I think each law school has it's own culture and personality.

My own experience was closer to Duncan's (I was in a part time night program, too). Most of classmates were cool and more than willing to help out others. Sure, there were a few jerks but that's life in general. The professors were a mixed bag. Some were great and balanced being very demanding with a genuine desire to see their students succeed, others had inflated egos and got off by trying to make you feel stupid. 


72
Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Healthcare Law
« on: September 08, 2015, 10:46:54 AM »
The idea is to work in a hospital or a facility where litigation wouldn't be a thing. I am considering UMiami, GA State, and Loyola Chicago.

Generally speaking, I don't think people should spend the considerable time and money on law school unless they actually want to be a lawyer.

Are you thinking of some sort of admin position, and that a law degree may help you get hired? I don't know enough about the healthcare admin field to know if a law degree is worth the cost. If you're thinking of an inhouse counsel position, I'm not sure that many hospitals have those. They probably just contract out to a law firm for representation. Either way, it might be difficult to avid litigation.

Secondly, your school options are all over the place. Think about where you want live after law school, as you will most likely end up in that immediate region.   

73
Hi Rezamza,

A few quick points:

First, I agree with Miami. At this point it is counterproductive to say "I need to get at least a score of X to get into school Y." I know that you want to get the highest score possible and get into the highest ranked school possible, all of us did. The problem, as Miami pointed out, is that until you have an actual score it's all speculation. You're putting the cart before the horse. Don't worry about schools right know, just focus on the LSAT. After you get a score on the board you can think about where to take it.

Are your GPA and prior score going to hurt you?

I believe that most schools will look primarily to your last score, and it's common for people to take the test a few times. I don't think that's a big deal, especially if you score higher than 157 in October. Your GPA is low for the schools you've mentioned, and yes, this will matter. A high LSAT score can help offset your GPA, of course.

Test Anxiety

This is something you need to get control of before dropping $100-200,000 on law school. If you can't, then I would seriously reflect on whether or not law school is the right choice. Law school exams are far more demanding than the LSAT and you will not get to cancel your score and retake. The three day long CA bar exam makes the LSAT look like kindergarten. I'm not trying to be negative here, but if you have serious test anxiety you need to consider this.

Law Schools

You have some very specific law schools that you want to attend (why Fordham?), and that's fine. But it's good to have a backup plan. Ask yourself "If I don't get into one of these schools, do I still want to go?" Also, what are your goals? Is admission to one of these schools the only way to accomplish them?

Depending on your LSAT score, you may need to be willing to cast a wider net or reevaluate your goals.

74
Law School Admissions / Re: Graduating Undergrad in 3 Years
« on: September 08, 2015, 10:10:12 AM »
Is graduating a year early something that will set you apart and gain you an advantage in law school admissions?

No, I don't really think so. It's not such a unique attribute that admissions committees are going to pay it much attention. I mean, is it possible that some small advantage may be gained? I suppose, but not much.

Here is a short list of things that will matter:

GPA/LSAT
URM status
Remarkable personal story/accomplishments. And I mean truly remarkable, not just "I volunteered at soup kitchen last Christmas and like to debate."

You best bet for getting into law school and obtaining scholarships is to focus on the LSAT and your GPA. A few points on the LSAT will be far more useful than graduating a year early. 

75
If you create crime your in trouble, if the bad act already occurred then  an attorney can  use the legal tools available at their disposable to assist a client.

Exactly.

I have no clue whether immigration lawyers are any more or less ethical than other lawyers, but I think you'll find that are unethical bums in every branch of law. I mean, c'mon, you think OJ came up with that stupid alibi all by himself?


76
I am talking about lawyers who give advise to AVOID court/arrest/etc. They are out there and very open about it. Replace with any other non legal act and its that simple. People who are still confused WANT to be confused on it.

I'm not sure that anyone here would disagree with you on that, but you earlier comments seemed more broadly construed.

Telling a client to ignore the court and not show up is definitely a breach, and I'm sure that there are some unethical immigration lawyers who do it. I've heard stories about shady lawyers telling people to claim political asylum just to slow down the process, etc., just like I've heard about crooked criminal lawyers, even family law. There was a case here in CA recently where an immigration attorney was disbarred and sent to federal prison for running a scam to bring people in illegally.

But I think this kind of stuff can be easily distinguished from a lawyer who simply uses legit avenues to zealously advocate for their client.


77
In fairness to Pie, I think he was arguing that by assisting the illegal immigrant in staying in the U.S. the lawyer is helping to perpetuate an ongoing illegal activity.

The problem with this argument however, is that even though the illegal immigrant's continued presence in the country may be illegal, the lawyer is actually attempting to rectify the situation by bringing the client into compliance with the law. There is nothing unethical about a lawyer saying "You are currently here illegally, but you may qualify for legal status via X, Y, and Z." This is what lawyers do all the time, in all sorts of contexts.

78
Maintain, I didn't say anything about notarios. Soy de Los Angeles, so I am certainly familiar with them. I was more shocked that the poster was alleging that attorneys were violating their professional responsibilities by advocating for immigrants.

Indeed.

Advocating for an immigrant, even an illegal immigrant, is not in itself a violation of any professional duty.

Pie:

Your argument is that by assisting the illegal immigrant in becoming legal, the lawyer is furthering the illegal activity? I see the logic, but no. And this isn't just an issue of politics or political correctness.

Lawyers are permitted to assist clients who are currently afoul of the law but wish to become compliant. Think of a client walking into a tax lawyer's office and saying "I haven't paid income tax in five years, but I want to get right with the IRS and avoid jail." As long as the lawyer does not assist the tax fugitive in hiding assets, or setting up offshore accounts, or producing fake returns, he can assist the client in clearing up his legal problems with the IRS.

So, if an immigration lawyer tells an immigrant to claim political asylum when he knows it's a bogus claim, or tells the client to lie about how long he's been in the country to take advantage of an amnesty, or whatever, then he's breached his ethical duties. But not just by representing and advocating zealously on behalf of the client.

Going completely afield of the original topic, IIRC, isn't it it the case that there is a difference between the function of an American notary and notaries in (some) other countries? For example, I believe that certain European notaries have what some of us would view as quasi-lawyer abilities.

Might that be the case with "true" Mexican (in Mexico) notaries, thus causing some confusion?
 

Yes, definitely. Notarios are common in Latin America and usually have some degree of training or certification. They have very clear roles, and can only perform certain tasks. How well this is regulated varies according to the country.

The problem in the U.S. is that many people calling themselves "notarios" and running storefront offices have zero training in American law. I believe Calbar was looking into some sort of training or regulatory action, but I don't know what came of it.

79
I doubt if they're breaching the rules of conduct, as long as they aren't knowingly filing false claims of asylum/political asylum (which, no doubt, some do), etc. Illegal immigration is indeed a political as well as legal issue, however, and is fraught with difficulties and competing interests.

Not sure those lawyers are advocating anyone break the law either or what exactly this supposed epidemic of illegal legal advice is.


If you mean the notarios issue, it is a genuine problem in CA. Notarios operate almost exclusively within the immigrant community and act as quasi-lawyers. They often have no legal training, and advise people on a broad range of subjects, not just immigration. They stand in the hallways outside the courtroom huddling with clients and telling them what to do. The advice is often bad, and the client has no recourse since the notario is unlicensed and uninsured, and can disappear into the woodwork.

Calbar was looking into this about a year ago and put up a warning on their website in Spanish telling people how to distinguish between lawyers and notarios.   

80
Sorry, I meant "notarios" not notaries. Notaries are fine.

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